Communications Specialist

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Panama City, PANAMA
Application Deadline :10-Aug-13 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA Local
Post Level :NO-C
Languages Required :
English   Spanish  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :1 year


The UN Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security.
Under the supervision of the Regional Director, in close collaboration with UN Women’s field-based presences and relevant HQ units, the Communications Specialist is responsible for developing strategic communications and media initiatives and managing media/press coverage and oversees the production of a range of communications materials for UN Women, including for the UN Women Regional Office website, and for online and offline audiences. S/he is responsible for timely, accurate and high-quality informational materials, such as press releases & media advisories, news briefs, fact sheets, stories from the field etc. for media outreach, the UN Women website, and inclusion in informational kits for further public outreach.
The Communications Specialist will collaborate closely with the Headquarters, Regional, Multi-Country Office and Country Offices’ (RO/MCO/CO) colleagues to ensure communications strategies, media relations and organizational outreach efforts are aligned with corporate communications policies and initiatives. S/he also collaborates with RO/MCO and CO colleagues to support outreach campaigns, resource mobilization and donor relations initiatives; s/he mobilizes support in conjunction with intergovernmental processes, and support the activities and special events organized for UN Women.

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of Key Functions:
  • Manage UN Women media/press relations;
  • Oversee and maintain regional online outreach and produce information materials for public outreach;
  • Provide advice and support to UN Women special events and campaigns;
  • Liaise closely with UN Women Communications Team at HQ to feed regional/national initiatives into corporate communications initiatives and vice versa. Coordinate communication  activities with UN communication colleagues at regional / national level;
  • Build communications partnerships and media alliances.
Manage UN Women media/press relations:
  • Media strategies conceived, planned and implemented in line with corporate guidelines to enhance the positioning of UN Women with the media, with a special focus on regional priority areas of concern;
  • Opportunities for press conferences identified and press conferences organized; interviews with senior managers facilitated;
  •  Press releases and media kits drafted;
  • Clear, consistent and timely responses to media inquiries; issuance of statement and corporate positions to media and other external audiences;
  • Maintained and expanded contacts with regional media; topics, background information, news-related developments and coverage of interest to each identified.
Oversee and maintain regional online outreach and produces information materials for public outreach:
  • Oversees regional web site technical and editorially and coordinates web presence of multi-country and COs in the region and in line with the corporate web policy;
  • Oversees and manages regional social media accounts in line with corporate social media policy or provides inputs to corporate social media accounts;
  • Drafts brochures, fact sheets, stories from the field to inform media and general public;
  • Video producers hired and supervised to produce relevant video material on UN Women’s work;  
  • Effective channels for dissemination of all information products to relevant target audiences identified and distribution supervised.
Provide advice and support to UN Women special events and campaigns:
  • Communications components of UN Women and/or UN campaigns, implemented, e.g.  Say NO to Violence against Women campaign; UNite campaign;
  • Special events or UN Women inputs to special events conceptualized and organized with a view to reaching wider audiences; to that end, concepts conceived and relevant materials developed and compiled. 

Liaise closely with UN Women Communications Team at HQ to feed regional/national initiatives into corporate communications initiatives and vice versa. Coordinate communication  activities with UN communication colleagues at regional /national level: 

  • Regular consultation with HQ Communications Section to ensure consistency with corporate policies, messaging and initiatives;
  •  Feedback to HQ communications team provided with a view to coordinate communications initiatives: informs about regional /national activities, provides comments on and inputs for corporate initiatives, seeks advice and support;
  • Regular contributions to and advice provided on UN Women corporate materials, e.g. corporate web site, illustrated Annual Report,  video productions etc. to highlight regional / national initiatives and ensure visibility at the corporate / international level;
  • Regular liaison with Communications Officers from other UN entities at the regional / country level to provide UN Women inputs to joint UN initiatives; to that end, represented UN Women on the UN Communications Group.
Build communications partnerships and media alliances:
  • Identifies and develops new communications partnerships and media alliances to enhance the visibility and cement UN Women as a thought-leader; manages and nurtures existing partnerships;
  • Identifies innovative opportunities and new communications tools and platforms which can serve to highlight the work of UN Women;
  • Guides and collaborates closely with MCO/CO communications officers to advance regional and national communications partnerships.

Impact of Results:
The results have a substantial impact on the effectiveness of UN Women’s regional communications and outreach efforts, enhancing the visibility, raising awareness and understanding of UN Women and its mission with the media and among the general public, building and maintaining supportive constituencies and leading to enhanced political and financial support for UN Women and its strategic areas, thus helping ensure UN Women achieves its strategic goals.


Core Values / Guiding Principles
  • Integrity: Demonstrate consistency in upholding and promoting the values of UN Women in actions and decisions, in line with the UN Code of Conduct;
  •  Professionalism: Demonstrate professional competence and expert knowledge of the pertinent substantive areas of work;
  • Cultural sensitivity and valuing diversity: Demonstrate an appreciation of the multicultural nature of the organization and the diversity of its staff. Demonstrate an international outlook, appreciating difference in values and learning from cultural diversity.

Core Competencies:
Ethics and Values:
  • Demonstrate and safeguard ethics and integrity;
Organizational Awareness:
  • Demonstrate corporate knowledge and sound judgment;
Development and Innovation:
  • Take charge of self-development and take initiative;
Work in teams:
  • Demonstrate ability to work in a multicultural, multi ethnic environment and to maintain effective working relations with people of different national and cultural backgrounds.
Communicating and Information Sharing:
  • Facilitate and encourage open communication and strive for effective communication.
Self-management and Emotional Intelligence:
  • Stay composed and positive even in difficult moments, handle tense situations with diplomacy and tact, and have a consistent behavior towards others.
Conflict Management:
  • Surface conflicts and address them proactively acknowledging different feelings and views and directing energy towards a mutually acceptable solution.
Continuous Learning and Knowledge Sharing:
  • Encourage learning and sharing of knowledge.
Appropriate and Transparent Decision Making:
  • Demonstrate informed and transparent decision making.
Functional Competencies:
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Communicates sensitively, effectively and creatively across different constituencies;
  • Demonstrates very good understanding of and experience in communications and outreach;
  • Proven networking skills, and ability to generate interest in UN Women’s mandate;
  • Strong initiative-taker;
  • Very effective at multi-tasking;
  • Focuses on impact and results for the client;
  • Interacts effectively with all levels of the organization, including senior management;
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude;
  • Identifies opportunities and builds strong relationships with clients and partners;
  • Demonstrates exceptional ability to remain calm, in control and good humored even under pressure and tight deadlines.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s degree (or equivalent) in communications, journalism, public relations, social sciences, international relations, or a related field.
  • 5 years of experience in communications at the national or international level, including   experience in media relations. Experience in on-line outreach and multimedia an asset;
  • Experience working in large development agency also pertinent;
    Good IT skills, including databases and office software packages;
  • Familiarity with gender issues. Familiarity with UN Women and UN system is an asset;
  • Outstanding oral and written communications and editing skills, with proven ability to meet tight deadlines.
Language Requirements:
  • Fluency in English is required. Working knowledge of another UN official language is an asset;
  • Proficiency in English to be tested trough TOEFL (500 point).

Please note that applications received after the deadline will not be considered. 
The electronic version of a UN Personal History Form (P.11) can be downloaded from the UNDP RSC website job section.
Applications without the completed P.11 form will be treated as incomplete and will not be considered for further assessment. 
Only short-listed candidates will receive an acknowledgement.

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

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